Garage doors play a vital role in allowing for convenient entry and exit into your house, in addition to keeping your car and any other items housed in the garage safe.
Throughout their useful lives, these doors and the opening mechanisms behind their opening and closing go through a lot of wear and tear. When garage door springs break, most homeowners usually find themselves worrying about how much it might cost to replace the entire garage door opening system. Fortunately, these springs can be replaced without the need for an entire overhaul.
If you suspect that your garage door spring is broken, or you are not sure why the door won’t open, look for these tell tale signs of a broken garage door spring.
A metal bar runs through most of the torsion springs fitted on garage doors. When the spring breaks, especially when the door is closed, a loud noise is produced as the coils unwind in a matter of seconds, releasing a lot of force. This results in a loud banging noise that can be startling to say the least.
It is also worth mentioning that broken a broken garage door spring may cause noisy operation. You might hear squealing and squeaking noises coming from the door every time you open or close it. Since such noises may be caused by a variety of factors, it’s recommended that you call in a qualified professional to check things out before making a final judgment.
Garage Door Won’t Open
The torsion spring is designed to make it easier for the garage door opening mechanism to open and close. To protect the automatic opening mechanism from unnecessary damage as a result of handling an undue force when trying to lift the garage door without the help of the spring, newer systems come with a safety feature referred to as the opener force. This feature prevents the door from rising past six inches above the ground when the spring is broken.
Therefore, if your garage door won’t go more than six inches above the ground, if at all it does move, then you might have a broken spring.
The Garage Door Opens Unevenly
Some garage doors are equipped with a torsion spring that runs parallel to the bottom of the garage door, and two tension springs located on each side of the door, perpendicular to the ground. If one of these tension springs break, the effect will be a door that rises slower on one side; the side with the broken spring.
This uneven rising and falling of the garage door is due to the imbalance created by the broken spring.
The Door Closes Too Fast
Since earlier garage door opening systems did not come with the opener force safety feature described above, they may still end up opening the garage door by sheer force. However since the broken spring cannot provide the necessary force needed to facilitate a slower and balanced fall/closing, the door ends up closing faster than usual.
If you observe that your garage door is closing faster than it used to in the past, check to see whether the spring is still intact, where possible, otherwise you should call in a qualified professional.
Gaps In The Spring
Torsion springs are designed to extend significantly, this also means that once they break, a gap can be seen in between the two resulting pieces. You can clearly see this gap, if you have a broken garage spring, by closing the door and inspecting the torsion spring visually.
To ensure that you don’t end up causing more damage, it’s recommended that you avoid using the garage door, once you witness any combination of the signs indicating that the spring is broken. Instead, call in a qualified garage door repair professional to inspect it for a broken spring in addition to any other issues.